Cross-sectional scanning electron microscopic image of the nanofabricated wells

Nanoconfined polymer electrolytes

We probe the nanoscale viscosity and molecular structure of confined polymer electrolytes inside rigid nanovolumes, using X-ray photon correlation spectroscopy (XPCS) and grazing incidence X-ray scattering (GIWAXS), respectively. We show that gold nanoparticle as Brownian swimmers can be used to probe the nanoscale viscosity of a confined polymer melt, and that the effective viscosity is substantially different than in bulk. Our experiments take advantage of recent instrumental improvements at the Coheren Hard X-ray Scattering Beamline (CHX) at the National Synchrotron Light Source II (NSLS-II), which have yielded improved coherence, and extended beam stability.

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Zheng Zhang
Research Fellow